I’ve been posting some of my updates on my fundraising page… here is a brief recap of the last two (click the links for full recaps). Two weeks ago, my long run was 9.83 miles, and it was hard. I reviewed what I did wrong (not enough rest after the previous day’s track workout, less than ideal nutrition the night before), and changed a couple things the following week. It paid off, and last week my long run was 10.85 miles, and it went really well. I averaged 10:17/mile… and if you’re supposed to run your long runs within one minute of race pace, that’s a good sign for me.
Then this week happened. And I was nearly thwarted!
If this picture isn’t enough to clue you in as to why, I’m not sure what will. I didn’t go before I ran, and within two miles, I was hurting. After three, I knew I had to get home. Pity is, home was 1.8 miles away. By the time I got home, I was questioning the wisdom of ever leaving the house without some toilet paper in one’s pocket.
It was also a strangely difficult run. 4.8 miles in 47:57 shouldn’t be that tough, especially with no speed work the day before… but some days are like that. After taking care of business, I jumped on the treadmill (I did not feel like doing any more hills – today 373 feet of climb was all I was going to do). I finished up another 3.5 miles before the house started to wake up, and even though I had planned on 12 miles total, I stopped at 8.3 miles, vowing to finish later in the day.
Getting 12 miles in two runs does not have the same physiological impact as getting 12 miles all at once, but before dinner I was back on the treadmill grabbing my last 3.7 miles. It was a Ragnar style training day. I went out faster in the last session knowing I had Sunday scheduled as an off day.
So what went wrong?
In short, nothing.
Endurance training is hard. Prior to Saturday, I had already logged 20 miles on the road and over a mile in the pool. More importantly, this was the first 30+ mile week I’ve had this training season. Here’s a copy of my log, which includes training before Boston and Marine Corps. You can see I only ran more than 30 miles in one week twice before Boston, and then I did it eleven times prior to the Marine Corps Marathon. With eleven weeks to go, I’m actually in pretty good shape for Chicago, and it’s okay if the long run was hard this week. If it weren’t hard, that would mean I’m not working hard enough.